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View Full Version : "Stiff" Frame, Full Poly...ouch!


TimothyO
01-24-2012, 03:08 PM
Yes, I love Racquet and string technology and all things tennis geek. For about a year I've been settled on gut mains and poly crosses and love that approach. I've also stuck with the 300 for several months and really enjoy it. Mostly I've been working on my serve and can see huge improvement. Starting to focus on return of serve against friends who serve big.

But being a tennis tech geek I can't help but fool around with different frames and strings. Today I demoed a YouTek IG Radical Pro with fully poly. the Radical Pro is in the low to mid 60s stiffness wise. The poly was supposedly a soft copoly (Scorpion maybe?).

Hit some serves and the wall and OUCH! After a little while I could feel pain in my arm and soon stopped. Later in the afternoon the pain increased.

I truly have a whimpy arm. I'm amazed that others can use frames with a flex of 70 and full poly. YIKES! :shock:

This and some other recent experiences with stiffer frames and even poly mains has convinced me to "stay in my own neighborhood" at the corner of Stiffness 60 and Gut Mains.

:)

LeeD
01-24-2012, 03:17 PM
Long fast strokes need softer rackets.
Short slow strokes need stiffer, bigger rackets.
Always been, always will be.

rofl_copter3
01-24-2012, 03:56 PM
With poly strings, tension is crucial to comfort. You will most likely have a lower chance of those pains if the string tension is in the 40's also how old were the strings because poly can go dead quick and even unplayed will go dead just sitting in your bag

Funbun
01-24-2012, 04:51 PM
I'm throwing this out there with the assumption you won't change your technique, but that's usually the problem case if you get tennis elbow or some arm injury.

How about you either get a heavier racquet with a slightly heavier swingweight or add some lead to the hoop of your racquet? You won't be getting so much shock to your arm if you get more mass behind you to hit the ball. That way, you can protect your arm behind all that mass, not to mention a bit more power.

I'm not very sure about changing your tension, simply because it needs a tad bit of adjustment, and thus, to your technique.

Or, go work out your shoulders a bit.

However, I think you should really consider looking at your technique first, mostly because that's the primary cause of arm injuries on this board.

Long fast strokes need softer rackets.
Short slow strokes need stiffer, bigger rackets.
Always been, always will be.

Are you sure? I know the K Blade 98 is quite a stiff racquet, but I use quite a bit of takeback and fast swings.

TimothyO
01-24-2012, 05:17 PM
My strokes are definitely long and fast with full shoulder turn. Against lower level players or "floaters" I can hit from a more closed stance for more power. Against fast paced shots I hit from an open stance. In either case for forehands I hit semi-western to full western with WW finish in general and have fallen into a buggy whip finish for returns against big serves (always a very loose arm and firm grip...not a death grip!)

haven't had any pain from the following frames:

- PB 10 Mid

- AG 4D 100

- Biomimetic 200 Lite

- Speed MP 16x19

- Speed 300

- EXO3 Tour 100s (both models)

So between technique and frames I really think its stiff frames and stiff strings.

EDIT: I should also note that I hit for 90 minutes tonight. Two of the guys I hit with are A level ALTA. No pain, as usual, with my 300 and gut mains.

TimothyO
01-24-2012, 05:19 PM
With poly strings, tension is crucial to comfort. You will most likely have a lower chance of those pains if the string tension is in the 40's also how old were the strings because poly can go dead quick and even unplayed will go dead just sitting in your bag

Good point. I'm a fan of lower tensions and suspect these demo frames have dead poly. They're from a local PGA related store which is notorious for terrible string jobs! :)

2Hare
01-24-2012, 05:47 PM
Long fast strokes need softer rackets.
Short slow strokes need stiffer, bigger rackets.
Always been, always will be.

Yea I always say Nadal needs to slow down, have short slow strokes! that way Federer has a better chance against him haha

Funbun
01-24-2012, 07:12 PM
My strokes are definitely long and fast with full shoulder turn. Against lower level players or "floaters" I can hit from a more closed stance for more power. Against fast paced shots I hit from an open stance. In either case for forehands I hit semi-western to full western with WW finish in general and have fallen into a buggy whip finish for returns against big serves (always a very loose arm and firm grip...not a death grip!)

haven't had any pain from the following frames:

- PB 10 Mid

- AG 4D 100

- Biomimetic 200 Lite

- Speed MP 16x19

- Speed 300

- EXO3 Tour 100s (both models)

So between technique and frames I really think its stiff frames and stiff strings.

EDIT: I should also note that I hit for 90 minutes tonight. Two of the guys I hit with are A level ALTA. No pain, as usual, with my 300 and gut mains.

Forget what I said earlier about technique then. It's probably your adaptation to the racquet.

Strangely, others have said that the Youtek IG Radical Pro is a rather flexible frame in feel, despite it's RA.

Additionally, I'm certain you could develop pain from testing out so many racquets at once. The spec range for your racquets are highly variable. Especially on service motions, your arm may not be accustomed to the different levels of resistance and shot you get from the impact of a ball on serves.

Typically, stiffness only causes injuries if it is complemented with poor technique. It shouldn't be a problem to a healthy, sound player like you. Thus, to me, it sounds like just a case of adjusting to a racquet.

TaihtDuhShaat
01-24-2012, 07:34 PM
It was most likely old sonic pro which looks like scorpion. Old Scorpion is even harsh in my 13.5 oz frames! I feel a sharp pain in the inner elbow from that string.

fuzz nation
01-25-2012, 11:59 AM
Good point. I'm a fan of lower tensions and suspect these demo frames have dead poly. They're from a local PGA related store which is notorious for terrible string jobs! :)

From one nerd to another: in case you don't have your own stringing machine, you may be cursed with perpetual restlessness and a hole in your heart.

vinnieSE
01-25-2012, 12:17 PM
Hi, new to the TT and all the great "tech" and gear in Tennis. Played tennis in my youth, followed by a ten year break followed by another 8. At it again and passion exceeds talent :-).

Interersted to learn more about racquet vs. strings and I know trial and error applies and its all very subjective but are there any ways of generalising on stiff racquets and full poly. Can power be limited by high tension and increasing spin potential and vice versa? If using a less stiff racquet with low power should one go low on tension and what variances are we talking about...from high fifities to low fifities? Thanks in advance,

Chris (Sweden)

TimothyO
01-25-2012, 01:45 PM
From one nerd to another: in case you don't have your own stringing machine, you may be cursed with perpetual restlessness and a hole in your heart.

I do see a stringing machine in my future.

TimothyO
01-25-2012, 01:54 PM
Hey Chris!

Tension can certainly change power but from what I've observed tension is just one variable in power and its interaction with variables such as frame flex, head size, string density, and string material are complex and crucial.

For example, in my Speed 300 with VS/CoFocus in the low 50s I felt like I was getting a wee bit too much power and too little control while I was getting tons of spin and comfort.

Switched to RPM crosses and control increased, spin is still fine, but a little less comfort and definitely less power (which I like since I can hit with greater racket head speed for more spin).

But in a PSLGT 18g CoFocus crosses in the high 40s is perfect.

And in the high 50s Spin production suffered even in The Speed 300.

My rule of thumb: bigger head with more open patterns demand tighter/stiffer strings. That can be achieved with tension or string material. Smaller denser heads benefit from softer materials at lower tension. Since spin production in a low friction hybrid seems to increase at lower tensions in larger open heads I think you need a stiffer cross.

In other words, it all depends! :)

TimothyO
01-25-2012, 01:59 PM
Forget what I said earlier about technique then. It's probably your adaptation to the racquet.

Strangely, others have said that the Youtek IG Radical Pro is a rather flexible frame in feel, despite it's RA.

Additionally, I'm certain you could develop pain from testing out so many racquets at once. The spec range for your racquets are highly variable. Especially on service motions, your arm may not be accustomed to the different levels of resistance and shot you get from the impact of a ball on serves.

Typically, stiffness only causes injuries if it is complemented with poor technique. It shouldn't be a problem to a healthy, sound player like you. Thus, to me, it sounds like just a case of adjusting to a racquet.

Yours was a good guess on technique! I have in fact suffered injury from bad technique or bad moves. One day I hit too many serves and wasn't opening my shoulders enough to the sky. I've been told that can pinch nerves and strain muscles in the shoulder. Now I'm careful to lean more and can generate more injury free power with bigger, more open shoulder turn on serves.

And getting jammed on a forehand I once felt a twinge of pain in my arm since I tried to muscle the ball instead of hitting with a loose arm. Foolish on my part!